3397. Cumberland Basin

The third piece from an outstanding recent paint jam on the long wall at Cumberland Basin that I have posted on Natural Adventures is by Sled One, and features a Raccoon (something that SPZero76 is a specialist in painting) off on its travels.

Sled One, Cumberland Basin, Bristol, December 2020
Sled One, Cumberland Basin, Bristol, December 2020

I saw a little video clip on Sled One’s Instagram feed which had a little raccoon dropping a piece of ice into some water and getting utterly confused when the ice just disappeared like magic… so beyond the poor mammal’s comprehension. I think this piece is a retelling of that little snippet of film through the imaginative lens of Sled One. This surreal piece is rooted in experience and naturally has been painted with supreme expertise. Classic Sled One.

3382. Brunel Way Bridge (81)

A beautiful and typically imaginative piece of writing from Sled One, painted alongside a Ments piece I posted last week. The colour palette is rather unusual set on a pale yellow background, certainly uplifting in this rather dark place.

Sled One, Brunel Way, Bristol, December 2020
Sled One, Brunel Way, Bristol, December 2020

The letters spell out MENTS, which is confusing, because I spent ages trying to find his usual SLED letters. I’m not sure what the symbolism of the brick walls and barbed wire is, but it might be a comment on the pandemic restrictions we have all had to suffer for so long. An interesting piece.

3343. M32 Cycle path (91)

Last weekend, a chance meeting with Sam Spade (a street art hunter) in St Werburghs tunnel, led to one of those perfect moments for photographing street art and meeting artists. He told me that there was a lot of activity on the M32 cycle path, behind the Black Swan and that I ought to get myself over there. I was heading in that direction anyway, but the light was fading and I might just as easily have headed home. Luckily I went to take a look and there was a paint jam of about seven or eight artists just coming to an end, many of whom I hadn’t met before (more on that in posts to come).

Sled One, M32 cycle path, Bristol, November 2020
Sled One, M32 cycle path, Bristol, November 2020

This piece from Sled One had already been completed, and he was just hanging around watching the other artists as they completed their work. Sled One is one of the most gifted artists I know, and he seems to be able to create stunning work, graffiti writing or character pieces, with consummate ease. Here the letters spell out SLED (although it almost looks like he has slipped in  an extra D) in a selection of letter shapes and colour shadings. The red and blue cloud clumps add an extra dimension to this fine piece of writing.

3301. M32 Roundabout J(3) (261)

The biggest news of the last two weeks has been the US election and a deep sigh of relief around the world as the Trump experiment seems to have run out of steam. It is incalculable how much damage that man has done to his own country let alone the rest of the world, all in the name of capitalism, selfishness, power, greed, hate, mistrust, vanity. The biggest things missing from his persona are any sense of dignity, empathy or compassion. How did his rise to become POTUS ever happen? What has happened to our world?

Sled One, M32 roundabout, Bristol, November 2020
Sled One, M32 roundabout, Bristol, November 2020

Trump has been a rich source of inspiration and material for street artists over the last four years, and this glorious piece from Sled One may be one of the last Trump pieces we get to see. Entitled ‘Dump Trump’ it shows the President in a less than flattering light with a poo coiled on his head.

Sled One, M32 roundabout, Bristol, November 2020
Sled One, M32 roundabout, Bristol, November 2020

3281. Clift House Road (4)

A recent epic collaborative piece on an ‘Upfest’ wall appeared without warning or fanfare a couple of weeks ago that brought together some fine atists, namely: Smak, Sled One, Ments and Curtis Hylton. What an utterly pleasant surprise and something of an improvement on the piece that adorned this wall before it.

Smak, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020
Smak, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020

On the left is a crazy but exquisite scene depicting venus flytraps feasting on various flying insects. In the middle is what looks a bit like an old microphone, although I’m not too sure if that is what it is. The story here… your guess is as good as mine.

Curtis Hylton, Ments and Sled One, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020
Curtis Hylton, Ments and Sled One, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020

Sled One has pulled together an equally bizarre piece that sems to be of a king cobra dressed as a policeman complete with truncheon and whistlewith an iced ring doughnut round its neck. The policeman woud appear to be in pursuit of a graffiti spraying mouse or two. Could this be a reference to some heavy handed policing which let to the prosecution of a street artist in St Werburghs tunnel recently?

Curtis Hylton, Ments and Sled One, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020
Curtis Hylton, Ments and Sled One, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020

To the right is a beautiful Hornbill by Curtis Hylton whose work usually involves a blend of stunning creatures composed of flowers, and he has worked miracles with this style here. Curtis Hylton has also embraced the colour scheme used by Sled One so that the two pieces merge into a true collaboration.

Ments, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020
Ments, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020

Dotted around the whole piece are a dozen or so ‘liquid’ spheres painted by Ments. It has been clear from recent pieces by Ments that he is working hard to create these solid/liquid forms and judging from his contribution to this collaboration this direction he is moving in is going really well. The whole collaboration is a celebration of bright creative ideas and utterly worth seeking out, although parking nearby is a bit of a challenge.

Smak, Curtis Hylton, Ments and Sled One, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020
Smak, Curtis Hylton, Ments and Sled One, Clift House Road, Bristol, October 2020

 

3203. John Street (1)

This is the first of ten very special pieces from John Street, tucked away in the old quarter of Bristol just behind Nelson Street. A developer is working on a building that has ten archways and they have run a competition for invited street artists to paint each of the archways with a small cash prize for the best one chosen by a panel of judges. That is the most that I know at the moment, gathered from a chance meeting with John Nation (the godfather of street art in Bristol). I will add more details once I have researched them properly.

Sled One, John Street, Bristol, September 2020
Sled One, John Street, Bristol, September 2020

This is the first archway working from left to right and is by the amazing Sled One who is telling us another amazing story in  the way he does so well. The main character is a rabbit chilling out at home (a sign of the times maybe) clutching a phone and a beer with a smoking cigarette in an ashtray. It looks like the rather forlorn rabbit is texting friends to keep in touch. He is weating a giant comedy shoe while a black cat watches on. So many details and so much to look at in this remarkable piece by Sled One and a great way to open up this series of posts from John Street. Hats off to the developers.

3200. M32 Spot (80)

Most of Sled One’s pieces tend to tell a story. Sometimes the stories are quite linear and easy to fathom out. Other times the stories are just too surreal and no amount of creative thinking will help with working it out. This is one such crazy surreal piece.

Sled One, M32 Spot, Bristol, September 2020
Sled One, M32 Spot, Bristol, September 2020

Painted alongside some of his ASK friends this intricate and detailed piece in great pinks and turquoises appears to show a sheep standing on the shoulders of a cow which is holding a pitchfork. The sheep is milking the poor unfortunate cow whose milk is spilling onton the Soker piece to its right.

Sled One, M32 Spot, Bristol, September 2020
Sled One, M32 Spot, Bristol, September 2020

Sled One is just getting better and better at these crazy cartoons, but it isn’t just the quality of his painting that amazes, but the creativity of his compositions that makes these pieces so good. Weird and wonderful.

3125. Nova Scotia (3)

So full of colour and imagination, this is an exceptional three-way collaboration from Tom Miller, Smak and Sled One, on, in my view, one of the best walls in Bristol.

Tom Miller, Nova Scotia, Bristol, July 2020
Tom Miller, Nova Scotia, Bristol, July 2020

On the left is an extraordinary contorted face from Tom Miller all looking a little bit nightmarish, with colours and shapes cascading from the mouth.

Tom Miller, Smak and Sled One, Nova Scotia, Bristol, July 2020
Tom Miller, Smak and Sled One, Nova Scotia, Bristol, July 2020

On the lower centre of the collaboration is a nice piece of equally colourful writing from Smak that complements Tom Miller’s piece.

Sled One, Nova Scotia, Bristol, July 2020
Sled One, Nova Scotia, Bristol, July 2020

Towards the top right hand side, the collaboration is topped off by a curious (aren’t they always), character piece from Sled One. It looks a little like an astronaut whose helmet has split and is experiencing rather unpleasant things. The whole collaboration is a celebration in colour and works nicely. It would be nice to see these three work together again.

3082. Cumberland Basin

Sled One is simply knocking out great pieces at the moment, all of equally high quality and imaginatively pioneering. This sausage on a mobile phone is such a great example of his creativity… a sausage? who’d have thought it?

Sled One, Cumberland Basin, Bristol, July 2020
Sled One, Cumberland Basin, Bristol, July 2020

Of course this is a mash up of writing (SLED) and a character, something that Sled One is a master of. Other writers will often add a character to the side of their work, but they rarely synthesise them into the piece itself. He has a rare talent. It is so good to see Sled One hitting the streets so frequently and it is worth making hay while the sun shines, because he can go quiet for extended periods (work demands probably). Sausages.

3062. Armada Place (20)

Armada Place is one of my favourite spots, but over recent years it has become rather quieter than it used to be and the quality of most of the graffiti there seems to have dropped a little. How wonderful it was then to stumble across this lovely piece from Sled One last week.

Sled One, Armada Place, Bristol, July 2020
Sled One, Armada Place, Bristol, July 2020

The piece is yet another surreal and strange piece depicting a figure hoiking out his skull from his face… I know how he feels! While looking at the scene unfold, it would be easy to miss that this is actually a blend of graffiti writing and a character scene… verify clever work. The writing says SLED.

Sled One, Armada Place, Bristol, July 2020
Sled One, Armada Place, Bristol, July 2020

As always with Sled One’s work, the piece is fantastically finished and so easy on the eye. His style of painting and the immense skill and experience he has makes it all look so easy and effortless. Go find it!